Monday, January 31, 2005
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How did the Arab media cover the election?
Read the whole thing. One wonders whether the election coverage will embolden residents of the Middle East beyond the borders of Iraq.
UPDATE: In Slate, Michael Young provides another rundown of how the Middle Eastern media covered the election. It has a great opening paragraph:
posted by Dan on 01.31.05 at 09:46 AM
Adam Smith's Invisible hand at work winning hearts and minds -- and dollars! for the TV folks -- in the Land of the Purple Finger. It's a keeper.
Al Jazeera is uprofitable and depending -- like PBS?-- upon state subsidies. Qatar is trying to find a buyer. Who knew? Maybe that explains the recent wake-up call to facts on the ground.posted by: Sissy Willis on 01.31.05 at 09:46 AM [permalink]
I'd be interested as well to know how state television in Iran covered yesterday's election.
The Iranian government is in a curious position. Officially it favored the elections, urged Iraqis to vote, even made it possible for Iraqis living in Iran to vote. Yet elections for a government enabled to write a national constitution, without a veto by clerics or the security services they control, is precisely what the Iranian clerical leadership has denied the Iranian people for the last decade. And the Iraqi voters yesterday have ties to Iranians as strong as any they have to other Arabs.
I don't discount at all the potential that people in other Arab countries might get ideas from media coverage of the Iraqi elections. But the immediate implications for Iran's internal politics might actually be greater and do us more good.posted by: Zathras on 01.31.05 at 09:46 AM [permalink]
One wonders whether the election coverage will embolden residents of the Middle East beyond the borders of Iraq.
It could hardly do otherwise. And, this is as I suspected it would be, the intent of the Bush administration all along.posted by: Bithead on 01.31.05 at 09:46 AM [permalink]
Don't count on this. One of the great arguments for Isreal back in 1948 was that it would create a democratic state that other Middle Eastern nations would emulate. Unfortunately, the anti-semitic passion in that part of the world has prevented anyone from taking any lessons from the Isrealis.
The same may turn out to be the case now, as anti-American hatred drowns out any willingness to take positive lessons from Iraq. I hope that's not the case -- I just realize it's a possible outcome, given the pathologies that still govern that region.posted by: Appalled Moderate on 01.31.05 at 09:46 AM [permalink]
Perhaps true in 48, AM, but this time they don't have the Jews to blame for it all.
The Iraqi elections received uniformly favorable coverage in the Saudi media. Saudi Arabia is having its first nation-wide elections starting next month.
This Arab News editorial which I blogged even uses the Iraqi elections to push the Saudi government to move faster toward representative government.posted by: John Burgess on 01.31.05 at 09:46 AM [permalink]
Al-Jazeera is unprofitable because the people who control Middle Eastern companies are all tied in with the Arab regimes al-Jazeera criticizes, and so won't buy advertising on it.posted by: Brian Ulrich on 01.31.05 at 09:46 AM [permalink]
Here are Al Jazeera's Sunday English-language stories about the election:
posted by: Kenneth Almquist on 01.31.05 at 09:46 AM [permalink]
Imagine what may have happened had western media covered the entire war and post-war process using the same decision making process that the Arab networks used on election day. I'm not suggesting that news agencies ignore the Coalition death toll, but surely there were other things happening? Can't it be argued that by putting the 'insurgency' front and center 24/7, the enemies of democracy were heartened and the proponents of freedom dismayed? Is that the purpose of our news?posted by: blaine on 01.31.05 at 09:46 AM [permalink]
Why are Iraqi elections fundamentally different than Palestinian elections in terms of democratizing the MiddleEast?posted by: Jor on 01.31.05 at 09:46 AM [permalink]
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